Leo Tolstoy Archive

The Teaching of Christ Narrated for Children
Chapter 50

Written: 1908
Source: From RevoltLib.com
Transcription/Markup: Andy Carloff
Online Source: RevoltLib.com; 2021

Leo Tolstoy

And they have brought Jesus to Herod. Herod heard a lot about Jesus and was now glad to see him. Herod called Jesus to come closer and began to question him about all he wanted to know. But Jesus didn’t answer him anything. And the chief priests and scribes, just like they did before Pilate, and now before Herod, accused Jesus in all crimes and told that he was a rebel. But Herod took Jesus for an empty person, and to make fun of him, ordered to put a red dress on him, and in that clown dress sent him back to Pilate. When the second time they brought Jesus to Pilate, Pilate again called the leaders of Jews and said to them: “You have already brought this man to me for agitating the people, and I interrogated him in front of you, and I do not see him being a rebel. I sent him with you to Herod, and here you can see that nothing dangerous was found about him. And, in my opinion, there is nothing to execute him to death for, wouldn't it be better to whip him up and let him go?” When they have heard this, they all shouted: “No, execute him, as Romans do: crucify him on the cross!” Pilate heard them and said: “Well, only there is a tradition on Easter to forgive one of the villains. We had one, the murderer Barabbas, sentenced to death, and now we’ve got this one. So, one of the two can be released. Who to let go, Jesus or Barabbas?” Pilate wanted to release Jesus, but the high priests have influenced the people so that everybody shouted: “Barabbas, Barabbas!” Then Pilate asked: “And what to do with Jesus?” And they all screamed again: "The Roman way, at the cross, at the cross!” Pilate did not want to execute Jesus, and he again began to persuade the high priests, to let Jesus go. He said: “Why are you against him so much? He did not do any evil, there is nothing to execute him for.” But the chief priests and their servants again screamed: “Execute, execute, the Roman way! Crucify, crucify him!” Then Pilate said to them: “If so, then take him and execute him yourself, and I don't see any guilt in him.” And the chief priests said: “We demand to follow the law. By law, he should be executed for calling himself the son of God.” Then Pilate, having heard these words, got confused, because he don't know what the words "son of God" mean. And, having returned to the judgment hall, he called Jesus again and asked him: “Who are you and where are you from?” But Jesus didn’t answer him. Pilate said: “Why don’t you answer me? Don't you see that you are in my power, and that I can crucify or let you go?” Then Jesus said to him: “No, you do not have any authority over me. The only authority is from above.” (Luke 23, 8-16; Matthew 27, 15-23, John 19, 6-11)

1) How did Herod question Jesus and how did Jesus behave?
2) How did they bring Jesus back to Pilate, and what did Pilate want to do with him, and what did Jews want?
3) How did Pilate try to help Jesus, what did the Jews demand?
4) How did Pilate question Jesus again, and what did Jesus answer him?